I’ve been busy with a lot of new things lately. Chief among them is a new job. I haven’t been practicing as much as I was a month ago, and it’s showing. That will come around, as I’m still playing better than I was 3 months ago. New sessions in the APA Masters, NAPA and in-house Cue & Cushion league have all begun.
The big (sad) news is that I will not be going to Vegas this year with the APA. We had our Masters LTC tournament last weekend and while I played pretty well, winning 2 out of 3 matches, we just couldn’t muster up the rolls and consistency to make it to the top 2 teams after the round-robin was over. That was a little heart-breaking, especially considering how we lost the round. But, the team we played should do well in Vegas and I’ll be rooting for them.
The next day the C&C league began and I’m not sure what happened to me because I lost horribly. I lost 7-2. I missed the 7-ball or later 5 times, and there were two different 1-9 combos for my opponent. He might not be a great 9-ball player (I had to give him 2 on the wire to start with), but he’s good enough to always get out with 3 balls on the table. That was heart-breaking as well.
However, last night I sort of avenged myself. I had to play another A player – even race to 9. We traded the first 6 racks then he started to catch a gear and won the next 3. However, I had one of my greatest kick shots in the middle there.
He had missed the 4-ball and rolled into an awkward position near the 5:
The 5 blocked my 1-rail kick (I might have draw this wrong, looking at it now), the 5 and 8 blocked the masse and jump, the 9 blocked the other long rail. The 8 blocked the long-rail-to-long-rail 2-rail kick. The 7 blocked the short-rail kick. I was kinda stuck for a minute. Then I saw it: It’s a goofy one-pocket shot: a 3-railer that reverses off the 3rd rail:
My kick went a little wide when it bent off the 3rd rail, but I had put enough juice on it to still hit the 4 and barely get a rail. That kick put me back in the game as I won this rack and the next 2 to tie up at at 6.
Then we tied at 7. After a mistake on the 2 from him, I ran the rack to get dead straight in on the 9, but the CB was frozen to the rail and I mis-hit it a bit and the 9 hung. He’s on the hill. Then he makes another mistake on the 5 and I get the rack. It’s hill-hill and he’s breaking. He break dry, hangs the 1. The 2-9 is available, but hard to get to. I try it and overrun position, I play a good safe which forces him to kick, he moves the 9… into a better 2-9 location. With ball in hand, I look at the table and think about running out, since it’s a pretty open table, but I decide to shoot the combo. The 9 drops and I win the match.
Afterwards we joked about how the last 4 racks were more of a contest of who wanted to lose more, since neither of us could run 4 balls if our life depended on it. We had been playing 2 hours already and we were just fizzling out.
In other new things, this new job has an on-site gym and a health rewards program which I’m excited about starting. I’ve gotten rid of Mountain Dew as my primary beverage and switched (back) to water. I contribute just making that switch to helping me win last night. Simply being properly hydrated improves brain function. 😉
Lastly, I’ve decided to build a new website for all of the local pool scene. I’m taking this opportunity as a way to upgrade my skillset while also solidifying the techniques I’m learning with the new job. I’ve been thinking about it for a long time and now I’m done thinking. I started coding on it this weekend and have put about 20 hours into it since Saturday already. I’m really excited to get this off the ground. 🙂